Cat's Eyes

Contributed by Bankfield Museum

Percy Shaw & Catseyes © Reflecting Roadstuds Ltd.

They were invented as result of an encounter with a cat one foggy night as Percy Shaw made his way home."The most brilliant invention ever produced in the interests of road safety".

One dark foggy night in 1933 Percy Shaw was driving down the steep winding road from Queensbury to his home in Boothtown. He had made this journey at night many times before, using the reflection of his car headlights on the tramlines to help negotiate the hazardous bends.

Suddenly Percy was plunged into pitch darkness, the reassuring reflective light was no longer there, the tramlines had been taken up for repair.

Percy later recalled that out the swirling gloom he noticed two points of light, the headlights had caught the eyes of a cat on a fence. Percy realised the great potential of improving road safety if he could create a reflecting device that could be fitted to road surfaces.

After many trials Percy took out patents on his invention in April 1934 and in March 1935 Reflecting Roadstuds Ltd was incorporated, with Percy Shaw as Managing Director.

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Comments

  • 2 comments
  • 1. At 13:22 on 10 May 2010, JB wrote:

    Ken Dodd suggested that had the cat been facing the other way, then Percy Shaw might have invented the pencil sharpener.

    Complain about this comment

  • 2. At 13:29 on 10 May 2010, JB wrote:

    Ken Dodd suggested that if the cat had been pointing the other way, then Percy shaw might have invented the pencil sharpener.

    Complain about this comment

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